Meaning of “faint” in the English Dictionary

"faint" in British English

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uk /feɪnt/ us /feɪnt/

faint adjective (SLIGHT)

B2 not strong or clear; slight:

a faint sound/noise/smell
The lamp gave out a faint glow.
She gave me a faint smile of recognition.
There's not the faintest hope of ever finding him.
She bears a faint resemblance to my sister.
I have a faint suspicion that you may be right!
not have the faintest idea C2 informal

used to emphasize that you do not know something:

"Is she going to stay?" "I haven't the faintest idea."
I don't have the faintest idea what you're talking about!

More examples

  • The first faint signs of an agreement began to glimmer through.
  • She heard a faint, almost imperceptible cry.
  • They said the printing was too faint to reproduce well.
  • She felt a faint stirring of envy when she heard that one of her colleagues had been promoted.
  • A gap between the curtains admitted the faint glow of a street lamp.

faintverb [ I ]

uk /feɪnt/ us /feɪnt/

B2 to suddenly become unconscious for a short time, usually falling down:

He faints at the sight of blood.
I nearly fainted in the heat.
She took one look at the hypodermic needle and fainted (dead) away (= became unconscious immediately).

More examples

  • His face went pale and he looked as if he might faint.
  • You gave us a real scare when you fainted, you know.
  • He caught me at the precise moment that I fainted.
  • By the middle of the next day she was almost fainting from hunger.
  • I stood up too quickly and very nearly fainted.

faintnoun [ S ]

uk /feɪnt/ us /feɪnt/

(Definition of “faint” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"faint" in American English

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faintverb [ I ]

us /feɪnt/

faint verb [ I ] (LOSE CONSCIOUSNESS)

to become unconscious unexpectedly for a short time:

I nearly fainted from the heat.

faintadjective [ -er/-est only ]

us /feɪnt/

faint adjective [ -er/-est only ] (SLIGHT)

not strong or clear; slight:

He walked along, guided only by the faint light of the moon.

faint adjective [ -er/-est only ] (WEAK)

very weak and nearly becoming unconscious:

He felt faint from hunger.

(Definition of “faint” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)